Lausanne, Switzerland: With the end of 2021 very much in sight, the International Hockey Federation (FIH) can reveal that the Netherlands women and Australia men will finish the year at the top of the FIH World Rankings.
Alyson Annan’s Netherlands team enjoyed another sensational year, powering to the FIH Hockey Pro League and European championship titles before landing their fourth Olympic gold medal in Tokyo, defeating Argentina in the competition final.
The Oranje end 2021 with 3015.35 points, over 600 ranking points ahead of second placed England with 2375.78. Olympic silver medallists Argentina will begin 2022 third in the FIH World Rankings, being just 14 points behind England with 2361.28.
Australia (2334.04) finish the year in fourth place, with Germany (2126.15) and Spain (1959.62) fifth and sixth respectively. Belgium (7th place - 1939.88), New Zealand (8th place – 1821.11), India (9th place – 1810.32) and China (10th place – 1677.96) complete the top ten.
There has been a change at the top of the men’s FIH World Rankings since our last update, with Belgium’s recent FIH Hockey Pro League draw and defeat at the hands the Netherlands being enough to see them lose top spot to Australia, the team they beat to Olympic gold at Tokyo 2020. Australia close the year with 2642.25 points, just ten points ahead of FIH Hockey Pro League and Olympic champions Belgium, who have 2632.12.
Tokyo 2020 bronze medallists India – recent third place finishers at the Hero Asian Champions Trophy in Dhaka, Bangladesh – sit third with 2296.04, with the Netherlands (2234.33) and Germany (2038.71) in fourth and fifth positions respectively.
The top ten is completed by England (6th – 1990.62), Argentina (7th - 1826.11), New Zealand (8th - 1598.24), Spain (9th - 1532.33) and Malaysia (10th - 1427.18).
The aforementioned Hero Asian Champions Trophy saw various exchanges of ranking points between the competing teams, although there was little in terms of movement. Competition winners Korea remain 16th with runners up Japan still in 17th position. Fourth placed finishers Pakistan continue to hold onto 18th place, while fifth placed Bangladesh have dropped two places to 40.
To see the complete FIH World Rankings, click here.
The rankings calculations model that FIH introduced on 1st January 2020 moved away from the previous tournament-based rankings system to a dynamic, match-based method where opposing teams exchange points in official, FIH sanctioned games. The number of points exchanged depends on the result of the match, the relative ranking of the teams and the importance of the match. More information about the new rankings model can be found below.
How the FIH World Rankings work:
The number of points exchanged depends on the result of the match, the relative ranking of the teams and the importance of the match.
FIH World Rankings explained:
- Based on the Elo rating system, which is used as the basis of many other sports ranking systems
- When two nations play against each other, a number of ranking points are exchanged between them
- In every match, the number of points gained by one team is exactly matched by the number of points lost by the other
- Teams will win more points for beating teams ranked above them, and therefore teams will lose more points for losing to a team ranked below them
- Teams will win less points for beating teams ranked below them, and therefore teams will lose less points for losing to a team ranked above them
- If a draw occurs, the lower ranked team will gain a small number of points and the higher ranked team will lose the same number of points
- The number of points exchanged is dependent on the result of the match (win, lose, shootout win/loss or draw), the importance of the match (part of a major tournament, or a test series for example), and the relative difference in ranking points between the teams before the match.